Research Topic Reprogramming of human induced pluripotent stem cells and their directed differentiation into cardiovascular lineages using light-inducible genome engineering.
Reference number: ISTM2017-02
Abstract

Project Overview


CRISPR-associated catalytically inactive dCas9 fused to an effector domain (dCas9-E) have developed recently as a powerful tool to modulate endogenous gene transcription and to interrogate mechanisms within cells. The project will capitalise on our optogenetically-engineered version of this CRISPR coupled with our custom-designed high throughput optogenetic platform to mechanistically improve reprogramming of human blood cells to iPSCs and their directed differentiation to mature cardiovascular lineages in tissue-engineered 3D models/bioreactors.

The project will be multidisciplinary and will aim to tap additional expertise from collaborators in the Universities of Cambridge and Glasgow. This will complement research skills through training in stem cell culture, cardiomyocyte differentiation, molecular and cell biology assays, genetics, electrophysiology, tissue engineering and advanced cellular imaging. This will be an exciting opportunity for the student to combine genetic engineering with tissue engineering to control stem cell fate and to produce better innovative models of cardiovascular disease for translational applications.

Requirements: The candidate should have some basic understanding and experience in molecular biology, cell culture and genetics. Interest in stem cell biology/cardiovascular research is desirable. Student would typically have a 1st or 2:1 degree in biological or medical sciences or similar subject area, preferably with some relevant research experience through a Master’s degree. With adequate training, the successful candidate will be expected to work independently and be responsible for attending relevant training modules. Informal enquiries are welcome and please direct them to Vinoj George at v.george@keele.ac.uk.


Please include the studentship reference number in your application - ISTM2017-02

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees The studentship will be available from 1st October 2017. Three years full time fees will be paid at current UK/EU rates.
Stipend Three years full time stipend will be paid at the current Research Council rate (£14,553).
Closing date 21st August 2017

Apply online here


Research Topic Mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles as therapeutic agents in arthritis
Reference number: ISTM2017-01
Abstract

Project Overview


Chronic arthritis of children, known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), affects 1 in 1000 children, and one of the leading causes of childhood-acquired disability. JIA is a complex inflammatory disease with a multifactorial immune pathogenesis. The standard first line of management is to use disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, however, a third of patients do not respond, and during this time, these children suffer pain, fatigue and loss of quality of life and may develop growth abnormality and disability.

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) possess anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties and these may be exploited therapeutically. Our results demonstrated that intra-articular injection of MSCs, mesenchymal stem cells conditioned medium or mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles (EVs) attenuates progression of inflammation and cartilage destruction in an antigen-induced arthritis model in mice. The anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties of mesenchymal stem cells are believed to be largely mediated by paracrine signals. The multidisciplinary project will verify and characterise these molecules and determine whether MSCs and MSC- derived EVs show therapeutic potential in JIA.

This project is supported by external grants from the RJAH Orthopaedic Hospital Charity, Orthopaedic Institute Ltd and ACORN Fund from Keele University.


This project would be of interest to a biomedical scientist or clinical scientist wishing to explore the therapeutic potential of stem cells for inflammation and arthritis. The project will develop a number of essential skills associated with regenerative medicine career development. These will include cell biology, fluorescent and transmission electron microscopy, immunological assays, flow cytometry, ELISA and Western blotting. The student will benefit from active collaborations with the West Midlands Paediatric Rheumatology Network. All required techniques and equipment are available in-house or via collaboration with well-established research partners. Oksana Kehoe’s lab has extensive experience in mesenchymal stem cell biology and inflammation: (https://www.keele.ac.uk/istm/staff/oksanakehoe/)


Please include the studentship reference number in your application - ISTM2017-01

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees The studentship will be available from 1st October 2017. Three years full time fees will be paid at current UK/EU rates.
Stipend Three years full time stipend will be paid at the current Research Council rate (£14,553).
Closing date 21st August 2017

Apply online here


Current Studentships

Keele University studentships, when available, are funded internally or from external sponsors such as research councils or from industry. If you are interested in any of the studentships available you can apply online.

Research Topic Zeolite Sensors for Medical and Environmental Applications
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-16
Abstract

Please see advert for full details.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years.
Fees 100% UK/EU tuition fees for 3 years commencing Academic year 2017/2018.
Stipend Stipend support for three years at Research Council rates (2017/8 stipend £14,553 per annum)
Closing date 15th of October 2017 in the first instance, with the interviews planned for October-November 2017. If no suitable candidate is identified following this deadline, then further applications will be considered until the post is filled.

Apply online here


Research Topic Ecological risk characterisation and modelling for the use of water treatment residuals as soil conditioners
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-15
Abstract

Please see advert for further information.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 4 years
Fees 100% tuition fees for 4 years.
Stipend Stipend at Research Council rates for 4 years. Stipend for 2017/8: £14,553 per annum

Funding for consumables and travel expenses is provided.
Closing date 31st August 2017

Apply online here


Research Topic Investigate the effect of sequestration of Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells on endothelial cells and astrocytes of the blood brain barrier, in cerebral malaria
Reference number: FNS GS 2016-09
Abstract

Applications are invited for a self-funded 3-year PhD studentship.  This study will investigate changes in human brain endothelial cells and astrocytes in response to PRBC cytoadherence and mechanisms involved in mediating these changes.  These studies will be performed using human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBEC) and human astrocytes grown in tandem in an in vitro co-culture model, using an advanced model of the blood brain barrier (BBB).

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees Please see advert
Stipend None - please see advert
Closing date 8 August 2017

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Research Topic Smartphone Sensing System for Health Management and Autoinjector Training
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-03
Abstract

Please see advert for full details.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years.
Fees Open to fully self-funded students only.
Stipend Open to fully self-funded students only.

Please note that self-funded applicants must provide funding for both tuition fees and living expenses for the 3 year duration of the research. There is a future possibility of competitive scholarship awards for outstanding applicants (1st class honours), however, none are currently available.
For information regarding University tuition fees and living costs please see http://www.keele.ac.uk/pgresearch/feesandfinance/ and
http://www.keele.ac.uk/pgresearch/feesandfinance/livingcosts/

Closing date 31st August 2017

Apply online here


Research Topic Analysis and modeling of neuromodulator triggered setting of functional networks in biological neural systems
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-08
Abstract

Please see advert for full details.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees Open to fully self-funded students only.
Please note that self-funded applicants must provide funding for both tuition fees and living expenses for the 3 year duration of the research. There is a future possibility of competitive scholarship awards for outstanding applicants (1st class honours), however, none are currently available.
For information regarding University tuition fees please see http://www.keele.ac.uk/pgresearch/feesandfinance/
Stipend No funding available.
Opportunity for self funded students only.
Closing date 31st December 2017

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Research Topic Responsive Virtual Reconstruction Environment with Integrated Tools
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-09
Abstract

Please see advert for full details.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees Open to fully self-funded students only.
Please note that self-funded applicants must provide funding for both tuition fees and living expenses for the 3 year duration of the research. There is a future possibility of competitive scholarship awards for outstanding applicants (1st class honours), however, none are currently available.
For information regarding University tuition fees please see http://www.keele.ac.uk/pgresearch/feesandfinance/
Stipend No funding available.
Opportunity for self-funded applications only.
Closing date 31st December 2017

Apply online here


Research Topic Design, Chemical Synthesis and Evaluation of Mimetic Nucleoside Analogues
Reference number: FNS GS 2017-14
Abstract

Please see advert for further details.

Details See Advert and details and Supplementary Information
Duration 3 years
Fees Open to fully self-funded students only.
Please note that self-funded applicants must provide funding for both tuition fees and living expenses for the 3 year duration of the research.
For UK/EU 2017/18 tuition fees are £4195 per annum and overseas are £18,900 per annum.
Stipend No funding available. Open to fully self-funded students only.
Closing date Applications accepted all year round.

Apply online here